Concerning the Table of Practice, the Pentacle and the Pentagram

Originally written as a response to a messages.

Do what thou whilt shall be the whole of the law.

The Pentacle

Despite common misunderstanding, the pentacle is a defensive tool, not evocative. Likewise, the words “pentagram” and “pentacle” are not interchangeable but are directly related. The pentacle is the 5-pointed star-polygon itself. The pentacle is the same with the addition of the circle around it. (Although confusingly some magicians refer to the table of practice as the “pentacle” despite generally not bearing its simplified design.) You generally would not use a pentacle alone if you were intending on summoning something. Wiccans do tend to put a pentacle on their altar instead of a table of practice but their magick tends to focus on either energy manipulation, spell-crafting, or interacting with their version of the trinity. (God, Goddess, and Dryghten) You don’t exactly need it to hold a spirit in place when doing that kind of magick so rather than that they use it as a method of correspondence. Evocation is usually done with a table of practice featuring a completely different design such as the Sigillum Dei Aemeth or the various grimoiric or grimoiric-adjacent table of practice designs. They are designed to embody the universe or at least the planet earth in the form of a magickal metaphor.

Trithemius Table of Practice

This table of practice was designed by Johannes Trithemius. In this one, the inner circle is the names of the 4 archanges. Then you have the triangle of the art. Next you have the word “Tetragrammaton” which is the “ineffable” name of God. After that you have the 4 demon-kings of the four cardinal directions. Finally around the outside you have the angels of the 7 classical planetary spheres; those being the Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, and Saturn.

Sigillum Dei Aemeth

The Sigillum Dei Aemeth design is obviously far more complicated. It is typically only used when evoking the Enochean Angels which exist in a class all their own and which require a much more elaborate method of summoning including speaking in a language called Enochean. Enochean was created by the angels and given to Dr. John Dee to be a lingua franca between the angelic language and human languages. Dee mistakenly believed it to be derived from Hebrew but in reality it was more closely related to English, Dee’s native tongue.

It’s worth noting that these table of practice designs are also semi-defensive with the intent of holding the summoned spirit as if in a container so they don’t slip away during the operation.


To a Thelemite, the pentagram is the magickal weapon of Geburah. Geburah’s associated number is five and the spokes of the pentagram enumerate 5. Additionally, each spoke forms a V shape. Therefore the formula “Vi veri universum vivus vici” (V.V.V.V.V.) is invoked meaning: “By the power of truth, I, while living, have conquered the universe”. This topic is one that deserves to be expanded on significantly and it has been by Alister Crowley in Magick Book 4 • Liber ABA. It starts on page 95 in the Second Revised Edition. I highly suggest reading it.

Love is the law, love under will.